The Turkish holiday. Part One., a short story by kitosdad. Date added: 2011-02-06. Times viewed: 938.
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The Turkish Holiday. (Part one.)
Charlie Somers hung his jacket in the hall and walked wearily into the kitchen where his wife Maureen was busy preparing their evening meal.
He drew out a chair and sat down with a sigh.
"Hard day love?" asked his wife.
"They are all hard days nowadays," he gloomily replied.
"Well, get this down you, and then you'll feel better" she said cheerfully, putting a heaped plate before him.
Charlie tucked-into his meal, and then sat back contentedly when he had finished.
"That was good," he said as he stretched his weary body.
"I've been thinking about our holidays Charlie," said Maureen. "This will be our twenty-fifth anniversary this year and maybe, just for a change, we might consider going abroad."
"Abroad?" said Charlie in a puzzled tone. "What's wrong with the caravan holiday we always have?"
"Oh, nothing love, but I just thought it would be nice to enjoy some reliable weather for a change, and to visit somewhere exotic instead of Whitby as we usually do."
Charlie thought this over. He liked Whitby and the caravan. His brain raced trying to find a plausible objection to his wife's idea.
"Well, it will be damned expensive you know," he finally offered.
"I've collected some holiday brochures today,and we can easily afford some of the special offers they are giving," Maureen quietly replied.
Charlie grudgingly leafed through some of the colourful brochures, and he had to admit that they were attractive, and they appeared to offer very good value for the money they were asking.
"Well, where would you like to go?"
"Turkey," she replied without hesitation. "I've always wanted to go there."
Charlie considered this for a moment before agreeing.
"OK love, if it makes you happy Turkey's where we'll go, but don't be expecting to go out buying loads of new clothes to parade around in," he added.
"Oh, I won't do that love, I can buy them when we get there, everybody says it's so cheap there."
The next Saturday found them both heading for Newcastle Airport. Having paid-off the taxi they headed into the large reception hall only to find a long queue waiting at the check-in point.
Charlie was already under pressure. He hated to queue, and Maureen, sensing his agitation, sent him to the restaurant to have a cup of coffee and to calm down.
Thirty minutes later Charlie returned to find Maureen almost at the check-in counter. She was relieved to find he was in a better frame of mind. They checked their baggage and proceeded to the departure lounge, but not before having to pass through the scanner where Charlie complained bitterly at having to remove his shoes.
"Come on love, we will soon be on the plane."
Maureen did her best to placate him.
A short while later their boarding announcement was made and they hurried to the waiting aircraft.
Again Charlie was angry to be told to "hurry along as the plane is about to depart."
"Bloody cheek, he fumed. We've sat there for nearly two hours, and then they tell us to hurry up!"
After boarding the plane they were in for yet another shock. They were seated separately.
Charlie's face was like thunder. He sat near the window and stared ahead frostily.
What a bloody fiasco this is turning into, he thought to himself.
Maureen quickly opened her book and started to read, feigning surprise that anything was amiss.
The flight took nearly three hours, and Charlie was very irritable not being able to smoke for so long a period.
Finally they touched down, and at last Charlie raised a smile.
It was nice and sunny outside. As soon as he stepped onto the runway tarmac the heat hit him.
"Jesus, I didn't think it would be this hot," he gasped looking at Maureen.
"Yes, isn't this better than Whitby? Wait till you see the hotel. The lady sitting next to me said she'd been there before and it's lovely."
"Oh Charlie, we are going to have a wonderful holiday."
Charlie just smiled and said nothing in return. Somehow things never went quite the way they were intended to.
After boarding the coach to their hotel Charlie was once again on edge. One of the passengers was missing, and the guide refused to leave the terminal until the person was found.
The missing man finally wandered up to the coach after half an hour.
He climbed leisurely aboard, offering no explanation for his delay to the other agitated passengers, took a seat, and began reading a book as though he had all the time in the world.
Maureen was hard pressed to stop Charlie bawling the man out.
After a picturesque drive the passengers started disembarking from the coach as each hotel was arrived at. Their hotel was to be second last on the list, and Maureen gasped with joy when it hove into view.
"Doesn't it look beautiful love," she gushed, gazing with wondrous eyes at the huge darkened-glass encased hotel, shimmering in the bright sunlight.
Charlie was nonplussed. He wanted a shower and something to eat.
He was already feeling exhausted, and the evening hadn't even started yet!
After collecting their keys from the reception they took the lift to the third floor.
They found their room, and opening the door, peered into the gloomy interior.
The heavy dark curtains had been drawn to keep out the invasive sunlight.
Charlie groped for the light switch, and suddenly the room was bathed in a low soothing light.
He put down the two cases he was carrying, took off his shoes and jacket, and flopped onto the bed. This heat was getting to him, but Maureen was too excited to feel anything but happy.
She drew back the heavy curtains, and slid open the sliding doors to their balcony.
She gave a little scream of joy on finding their room was directly above the swimming pool.
"Charlie, the pool is directly below our room," she reported.
"Well I hope it isn't full of screaming teenagers all day long," Charlie replied sullenly .
Maureen started to unpack the cases while Charlie lay there resting.
After finishing the unpacking, she turned to her dozing husband and asked, "Shall we have a quick look around the hotel love?"
"Not me, he replied. I'm going to have a little kip, but you go if you want."
Maureen needed no second bidding, and down the stairs she tripped, intent of finding out everything she could about the hotel.
She wandered dreamily around the huge complex, admiring the gardens and the luxurious restaurant.
The staff were busy arranging the tables and seats for the guests evening meal.
She sighed. She had never seen anything quite so beautiful as this in her entire life.
Taking a seat on a large sofa in the huge reception hall, she spent some time
observing the arrival and departure of other guests. It was all a very new and exciting adventure compared to her usual mundane life.
Most of the guests arrived with expensive luggage, but others, like Charlie and herself, had only battered old suitcases and the inevitable plastic carrier bags.
What a revelation this was to her. She had never witnessed such splendour and activity before.
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